Thursday, December 20, 2012
Sur La Table was jammed with shoppers ravenous for a bargain. At the sale rack, a woman asked me how much more of a discount they'd be offering. "I...don't..." and I drifted away. Maybe I looked like a well informed shopper. Since I didn't need a pair of socks that also polishes the floor, and because I am all set on pepper mills, I left.
So. At the pier, a man was using the self-timer on his camera to get shots of himself in front of the bay bridge. The long ties of his Peruvian hat attempted to whip his face as he posed, arms folded tightly across his middle. He'd run back to check the result, reposition the camera and set the timer again. I thought for an instant of offering to take a photo for him, but he seemed to be enjoying himself.
I'm seconds away from deleting this bore of a post, so I'll stop now.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Library. I'll bet if you asked the average earbud-wearing youth if they've every been to a library, they'd be all, "Wait, what? Yeah, no." because that's how people talk now. "Yeah. No."? Which is it?
Say that word to me, slap on a blood pressure cuff, and you will see my numbers drop to double digits. First word that comes to mind? Quiet. As in "peace and --." No overheard one-sided phone conversations: "No. Yeah. I'll be over later. I'm in the lie-berry right now. Huh? I dunno. Some place with half-asleep glasses-wearing people in it."
Next word: Musty. Now, generally I'm not pro-musty. Musty is no good for closets, but that's what libraries have going for them. That smell, my friends, is knowledge. That smell is leaving the present for another world created solely in your mind by another person's words. That smell is literature.
There's the quiet again but there's also a special mothership kind of humming, a creaking of bindings unhinging, maybe for the first time in decades. The protective plastic cover rustling, edges a little scratchy in your palm. Your breath whistling through your nose and the shuffle of your soles on the flat dull carpet.
And the sights. There's something for your sense of sight, too. Tall, thin volumes; short, compact, purse-sized books, embossed gold narrow Times Roman titles, cover art that lets you know the contents are good, like a really cool wine bottle label.
I think I'll let your sense of taste just…be. It really doesn't come into play at a library. What you do there is your business. Just don't let the library staff catch you.